Does Clutter Have a Psychological Effect?

The world we live in is becoming increasingly cluttered. Western homes are full of more possessions than ever before, and of course many workplaces are similarly burdened with countless packages, files and other forms of paperwork that never seem to get thrown away.

Why Does Clutter Happen?

Sometimes, clutter builds up because we are disinclined to throw things out. There is a theory that this happens because the part of our brain that responds to pain is the part that acts when we contemplate throwing possessions away. In a sense, it literally ‘hurts’ us to cast away an item that we have either an emotional or financial investment in. However, another problem is that the world actually encourages us to record and hoard, and so clutter can frequently build up without us even wanting to.

Is There an Effect?

Warehouse storage, the archiving of documents and similar practices are all areas where clutter can abound, and unless these systems are carried out in a tidy fashion there is a risk of poor productivity. Studies have shown that clutter overloads the brain in a very similar way to multi-tasking, distracting and otherwise impeding our ability to concentrate. On top of this the average person allegedly wastes more than four hours every week searching through paperwork for something that they need, and such situations naturally result in stress.

What Can Be Done?

The effects of clutter are very real. Your brain becomes less able to adapt between tasks, less efficient at processing information and your memory can suffer too, and the really worrying thing is that ‘electronic clutter’ (i.e. computer files, etc) can produce just the same problems. Because of this, there is a need to control this clutter to ensure productivity in the workplace.

Obviously, such methods will vary according to the situation; you might need to remove files from your desktop for example, moving them into folders to ensure that you aren’t greeted with a cluttered screen every morning. However, for physical clutter you’ll need space-efficient and robust storage, and that’s where we come in.

Here at CMC: The Shelving Centre, we are ideally placed to help you combat workplace clutter, as our specialised used shelving solutions can be tailored to warehouse, archival and office environments alike, so you’ll always be able to maintain a tidy and work-friendly environment. If you’d like more information, please don’t hesitate to contact us now by calling 020 8998 9247 or emailing

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